No Boundaries, No Limitations - by Umatiana Lingam

No Boundaries, No Limitations

For the past few days, these words have been plaguing my mind; I woke up one day like this. I went on with my daily routine of errands and work but these words were so persistent that at several points while driving, I said them out loud to myself as if beckoning an answer. 

As the days passed, these words still lingered on but less frequently, the words now replaced by an unfathomable sense that there was something of value here that needed my attention. What was I suppose to understand more deeply here? To start with, I decided to check on the dictionary definition of it. Here it is.


Boundary  -  A limit of something abstract, especially a subject or sphere of activity.

A line which marks the limits of an area; a dividing line:  ‘a boundary wall’

Limitation- A condition of limited ability; a defect or failing


It seems to me upon reflection, that the first image it conjures is some kind of prison or cage. Either by one’s own making or just life’s circumstances, through belief systems, our past experiences and perceptions, thus creating an idea of not being able to surpass them that keeps us locked in fear. 


I had recently reconnected with an old acquaintance that I had worked well with in my years of modelling and working as a TV and print commercial talent. That person is Jen Siow of Jen Studio. We had lost contact for several years but for some reason unbeknownst to me, Jen’s name kept popping up in my head, to the point that I felt compelled to seek him out. 

In our first conversation, Jen mentioned to me that he was visually-impaired and was considered legally blind. To say I was shocked was an understatement. We decided to meet up and as our conversation progressed and we shared the on goings of our life, Jen expressed a desire for us to work together to create art using his photography skills. I was only too pleased to see that despite the insurmountable challenges he must go through, he hadn’t lost the spark, spunk and enthusiasm that was always Jen I knew.

As we worked on creating this ‘new page’ together here, I had the immense pleasure of working with his crew and I experienced first-hand how Jen worked now. As far as I can sense, Jen has become involved in a larger and all-encompassing way now. No longer having to be the only ‘eyes’ behind the camera, it has given Jen the freedom to break all boundaries and limitations of where art begins and ends. 

We often take many things for granted I life, we take every sense we have been given at birth and we think we have fully utilized them. I now understand, even if not wholly what it means to truly believe in ourselves and our ability to break our boundaries and limitations. 

I see Jen do it each day and as he tells me to choose my ‘HERO’ shot for a photo I like; I see the unintentional and hidden meaning it has for me now. 

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder but what happens when you can no longer see beauty in the traditional sense then? What does Jen see that we can’t?